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Archive for the tag “@premedadvice”

Who dat?? Who dat??

Who dat speaking at my alma mater?? Yes, President Barack Obama was the commencement speaker at Rutgers University this weekend, and was awarded an honorary degree!! I love that he went to this school – not some place that offered him ridiculous amounts of money, or somewhere that’s always crawling with the academic elite. He made a lot of people very happy – we’ll be so sad to see him leave office IMG_2354 - Copy

What’s Eating You??

Well that was quite a hiatus :-/ But rest assured, Wag Wolf is back, and we’re gonna jump right into this serious topic…

Have you ever shaken hands with anyone?

Have you ever played with a pet?

Have you ever eaten at a fast food restaurant?

Have you ever eaten raw fruits or vegetables?

Have you ever traveled outside of the country?

Have you ever taken a dip in the ocean?

If you answered yes to any of the above questions, you may have… a parasite…

A parasite??? Yes. The problem is much more common than you have been led to believe, and may be behind some of your most stubborn health issues…Check this out…

(From MindBodyGreen)

Having a parasite can be a scary thought, but you’re not alone; parasites are far more common than you think. It’s a myth that parasites only exist in underdeveloped countries. In fact, the majority of the patients I see in my clinic have a parasite. As you will see, parasites can causing a myriad of symptoms, only a few of which are actually digestive in nature.

What is a parasite?

A parasite is any organism that lives and feeds off of another organism. When I refer to intestinal parasites, I’m referring to tiny organisms, usually worms, that feed off of your nutrition.

Some examples of parasites include roundworms, tapeworms, pinworms, whipworms, hookworms, and more. Because parasites come in so many different shapes and sizes, they can cause a very wide range of problems. Some consume your food, leaving you hungry after every meal and unable to gain weight. Others feed off of your red blood cells, causing anemia. Some lay eggs that can cause itching, irritability, and even insomnia. If you have tried countless approaches to heal your gut and relieve your symptoms without any success, a parasite could be the underlying cause for many of your unexplained and unresolved symptoms.

How do you get parasites?

 

There are a number of ways to contract a parasite. First, parasites can enter your body through contaminated food and water. Undercooked meat is a common place for parasites to hide, as well as contaminated water from underdeveloped countries, lakes, ponds, or creeks. However, meat is the not the only culprit. Unclean or contaminated fruits and vegetables can also harbor parasites. Some parasites can even enter the body by traveling through the bottom of your foot.

Once a person is infected with a parasite, it’s very easy to pass it along. If you have a parasite and don’t wash your hands after using the restroom, you can easily pass microscopic parasite eggs onto anything you touch — the door handle, the salt shaker, your phone, or anyone you touch. It’s also very easy to contract a parasite when handling animals. Hand washing is a major opportunity to prevent parasite contamination and transmission. Traveling overseas is another way that foreign parasites can be introduced to your system. If you consumed any contaminated water during your travels, you may have acquired a parasite of some kind.

10 Signs You May Have a Parasite

  1. You have an explained constipation, diarrhea, gas, or other symptoms of IBS
  2. You traveled internationally and remember getting traveler’s diarrhea while abroad
  3. You have a history of food poisoning and your digestion has not been the same since.
  4. You have trouble falling asleep, or you wake up multiple times during the night.
  5. You get skin irritations or unexplained rashes, hives, rosacea or eczema.
  6. You grind your teeth in your sleep.
  7. You have pain or aching in your muscles or joints.
  8. You experience fatigue, exhaustion, depression, or frequent feelings of apathy.
  9. You never feel satisfied or full after your meals.
  10. You’ve been diagnosed with iron-deficiency anemia.

The signs of a parasite can often appear unrelated and unexplained. As I mentioned previously, there are MANY different types of parasites that we are exposed to in our environments. I typically see parasites causing more constipation in patients than diarrhea, but some parasites are capable of changing the fluid balance in your gut and causing diarrhea. Trouble sleeping, skin irritations, mood changes, and muscle pain can all be caused by the toxins that parasites release into the bloodstream. These toxins often cause anxiety, which can manifest itself in different ways. For instance, waking up in the middle of the night or grinding your teeth in your sleep are signs that your body is experiencing anxiety while you rest. When these toxins interact with your neurotransmitters or blood cells, they can cause mood swings or skin irritation.

How to Test for Parasites

The best way to test for a parasite is to get a stool test. Most doctors will run a conventional stool test if they suspect a parasite, however these are not as accurate as the comprehensive stool tests that we use in functional medicine.

Conventional Ova and Parasite Stool Test

Conventional stool tests can identify parasites or parasite eggs in your stool, yet this test comes with many limitations. The problem with this test is that it is only conditionally successful. This test requires three separate stool samples that must be sent to the lab for a pathologist to view under a microscope. Parasites have a very unique life cycle that allows them to rotate between dormant and alive. In order to identify them in this conventional test, the stool sample must contain a live parasite, the parasite must remain alive as the sample ships to the lab, and the pathologist must be able to see the live parasite swimming across the slide. While these can certainly be useful tests for some people, they are unable to identify dormant parasites, and therefore I often see a high number of false negatives with this type of stool test.

Functional Medicine Comprehensive Stool Test

In my practice, I use a comprehensive stool test on all of my patients. The comprehensive test is much more sensitive than the conventional stool test because it uses Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) technology to amplify the DNA of the parasite if there is one. This means that the parasite can actually be dead or in its dormant phase and it will be detected on this test. Because this test utilizes PCR technology, it isn’t reliant on a pathologist seeing a live parasite swimming on the slide. I frequently diagnose parasites in my patients that were missed on conventional stool tests.

How to Treat Parasites

The comprehensive stool test is able to identify 17 different parasites, so when I know which parasite my patient has, I use prescription medications that target specific species of parasites. If, however, the parasite cannot be identified, I usually use a blend of herbs, including magnesium caprylate, berberine, and extracts from tribulus, sweet wormwood, grapefruit , barberry, bearberry, and black walnut. You can typically find an herbal combination at a compounding pharmacy or though my website. In general, these herbal formulas provide a broad spectrum of activity against the most common pathogens present in the human GI tract, while sparing the beneficial gut bacteria. Before starting an anti-parasite herbal supplement, I recommend you consult your physician and have your liver enzymes checked if you have a history of liver disease, heavy alcohol use or previous history of elevated liver enzymes.

If you think you might have a parasite, I encourage you find a functional medicine physician in your area so that they can order a comprehensive stool test for you. My motto is, It all starts in your gut and your gut is the gateway to health. A healthy gut makes a healthy person.

And DrOz even has something to say about this…What do you think?

 

As always, Wagner Wolf warns you to take care of your health, and stop by wagnerwolf.com to purchase books and join our lively conversations…

WagnerWolf.com: WELLNESS WEDNESDAYS Bodily Functions…

Have you guys been reading through all the good facts we post about the human body?? It’s really good stuff, and if you’re pre-med, this will be your LIFE pretty soon!! Here go some more factoids…

Bodily Functions

We may not always like to talk about them, but everyone has to deal with bodily functions on a daily basis. These are a few facts about the involuntary and sometimes unpleasant actions of our bodies.

  1. Sneezes regularly exceed 100 mph. There’s a good reason why you can’t keep your eyes open when you sneeze–that sneeze is rocketing out of your body at close to 100 mph. This is, of course, a good reason to cover your mouth when you sneeze.
  2. Coughs clock in at about 60 mph. Viruses and colds get spread around the office and the classroom quickly during cold and flu season. With 60 mph coughs spraying germs far and wide, it’s no wonder.
  3. Women blink twice as many times as men do. That’s a lot of blinking every day. The average person, man or woman, blinks about 13 times a minute.
  4. A full bladder is roughly the size of a soft ball. No wonder you have to run to bathroom when you feel the call of the wild. The average bladder holds about 400-800 cc of fluid but most people will feel the urge to go long before that at 250 to 300 cc.
  5. Approximately 75% of human waste is made of water. While we might typically think that urine is the liquid part of human waste products, the truth is that what we consider solid waste is actually mostly water as well. You should be thankful that most waste is fairly water-filled, as drier harder stools are what cause constipation and are much harder and sometimes painful to pass.
  6. Feet have 500,000 sweat glands and can produce more than a pint of sweat a day. With that kind of sweat-producing power it’s no wonder that your gym shoes have a stench that can peel paint. Additionally, men usually have much more active sweat glands than women.
  7. During your lifetime, you will produce enough saliva to fill two swimming pools. Saliva plays an important part in beginning the digestive process and keeping the mouth lubricated, and your mouth produces quite a bit of it on a daily basis.
  8. The average person expels flatulence 14 times each day. Even if you’d like to think you’re too dignified to pass gas, the reality is that almost everyone will at least a few times a day. Digestion causes the body to release gases which can be painful if trapped in the abdomen and not released.
  9. Earwax production is necessary for good ear health. While many people find earwax to be disgusting, it’s actually a very important part of your ear’s defense system. It protects the delicate inner ear from bacteria, fungus, dirt and even insects. It also cleans and lubricates the ear canal.

Get some more at WAGNERWOLF.COM Purchase our books and be on your way to academic bliss!!

WagnerWolf.com: Hopkins Week Continues…

All week we’ve been talking about The Johns Hopkins University (undergrad and grad facts). Check out our Twitter page (@PreMedAdvice) for the scoop, including what Woodrow Wilson and Albert Einstein have to do with JHU…

http://www.wagnerwolf.com

WagnerWolf.com: On The Road To An M.D. (4)

Primary School. High School. College. We’re on the road to an M.D., so next up is MEDICAL SCHOOL…

Can I tell you something strange? I had the BEST time of my life in medical school. Better than high school. Much better than college. My friends and I say all the time that this was not supposed to happen. We were supposed to be miserable, tired, overwhelmed, and overworked, but that is far from what our experience was. I learned a lot (and had fun while doing it), served my community, and set myself up for success upon graduation. I knew all the material and impressed those at other institutions. I even studied abroad (all expenses paid) during my fourth year – an incredible experience…I attribute all of this to being at the best school for me where I was surrounded by great professors, staff, and students. There were opportunities everywhere, and because I was finally devoting time to my passion (medicine), everything fell into place.

Let that be an important reminder to you. Choose the best school for yourself. The one that is a perfect fit. The one where things just feel right.  Find study buddies who are serious about learning and will help you master the material. Select an environment that will expose you to all kinds of patient populations and give you hands on projects – it will definitely help when choosing a specialty or residency program. And through it all, keep pushing. Just because I said I had a great time in med school doesnt mean that it was 100% problem free. Luckily, I learned how to deal with setbacks & disappointments so that they didnt detract from the wonderful things happening around me.

May your story be filled with great times also. May you get everything out of school that you want. May you enjoy every second of the journey. For detailed information on my journey through elementary school, high school, college, and event residency, you gotta order my book, ‘So You Wanna Be A Doctor??’. It has my complete story as well as the stories of my friends and colleagues during school. It will help if you’re on the path, but it is also a great read full of triumphs and trials. Hop on over to http://www.wagnerwolf.com to see what great things I’m talking about 😀

WagnerWolf.com: On The Road To An M.D. (3)

This series is meant to help you reflect on your academic journey and set goals for future success. We looked at elementary school and high school. Now we’re moving into the big leagues…COLLEGE…

College is a magical place for young adults and where some of your best learning will take place (in the classroom and out). We could talk about academics, but let me lay some words of caution on you about other things taking place in college…

Most college students are aged 18-22, and this is a time of major development. Our bodies are still growing and changing. Our personalities are developing. Our decision making abilities are progressing. So while you may think ‘i’m over 18, therefore I know it all’, realize that you are still coming into your own, and the environment of college can help. Being on your own, setting your own schedule, deciding how much to study, honing time management skills, and dealing with difficult personalities all give you new and important life skills. Make the most of this and allow for positive growth at this time.

You may be tempted to let your classwork take a backseat to all the new & interesting things happening in college. DONT. I made this mistake and desperately wish I had been more mature in my approach to parties, organizations, travels, and new friends. As a college freshman and sophomore, I put in minimum work in the classroom, but never let a social event pass me by. What I know now is that these things will ALWAYS be there when you want them, but you only get one shot to secure a high GPA, rack up lots of impressive grades, grasp important classroom ideas/concepts, and make good first impressions. Remember your future. Remember why you are in college. Dont waste your time or money!

And speaking of wasting money, don’t wander aimlessly in college unsure of your desired major or field of study. Academic advisers, counselors, family, friends, and professors would be happy to sit with you to help you discover your passions, strengths, goals, and interests. You must also do some soul searching to know what it best for you, and college is the perfect time to do it. You may walk in a young, inexperienced child, but we pray that you walk out a self sufficient, educated, mature, worldly, well rounded contributor to society, ready to make your mark on the world.

How exciting is college?!

Make sure that you have fun and make the most of the opportunity. Best wishes to you from Wagner Wolf!!

WagnerWolf.com: On The Road To An M.D. (2)

Hello everyone!

In our last post, we talked about early education experiences and how they can shape a person’s entire life. Did you think about your time in elementary school and what it has meant for your life?

Today, we fast forward to HIGH SCHOOL. I know that many of our followers are in high school, and I think it’s a terrific time to either sink or swim academically. What are the factors that may cause one to sink? Being a teenager and dealing with all the changes, hormones, and rebellion that may come with that. Peer pressure is a powerful influence for some, and if you’re not careful, it can steer you down the wrong path. Not giving enough thought to your future, who you are, and what you want out of life. The four years of high school can fly by very quickly – you don’t want to be at graduation with no idea of the next steps for yourself…

Now there are also many, many ways a student can swim in high school (metaphorically, of course). There are millions of teachers out there who are more than willing to give of themselves in order to help a student along. There are summer and after-school programs meant to enrich a student’s life and give them positive direction. There are guidance counselors (and online resources) to expose a student to all the schools and career paths available.

I don’t know where i’d be without the support of my high school teachers, church family, and actual family. I am so grateful that I had them around, and that I also had a great sense of my abilities and dreams. What is YOUR high school experience like? Do you feel that you are sinking or swimming? How can you ensure success for yourself now and in the future? What resources can help you along the way??

We hope ‘So You Wanna Be A Doctor’ is one of those resources, and that you’ll let http://www.WagnerWolf.com help you as much as we can. Visit our website, check out all our books, rely on your family and teachers and family for help, and never let go of the dreams in your heart…Life is a wonderful thing, and as a high school student, the best is yet to come for you. Best wishes! Dream big! Go for it!!

See you in the next post 🙂

WagnerWolf.com: On The Road To An M.D. (1)

Greetings!

In this series, we are getting back to academics, but we’d like to do some introspection and exploration. We’ve all gone through some schooling (at least I hope we have), so let’s look at what it means to be a student, and how we can influence the rest of our lives from the halls of academia. You ready?? Here we go…

We’re taking it back to elementary school days, so play along. Take a minute to think about each question (write it out if you need to) and get in touch with your thoughts and feelings on each topic…What were your feelings about school when you were in primary school? What was great about it? What wasnt so great? What did you want to be as an adult? Did the people around you make it seem like your dreams were possible, or did they try to force ‘reality’ on you at every turn? How did your elementary experiences shape the rest of your academic career? What do you wish your younger self knew back then?

Now let’s look at the students in our lives who are in elementary school now. How have you helped/hindered them? What is the best advice you can give a student to boost their confidence and interest in future success? What is the most important thing they should be taking from their early school experiences?

It all starts very early, and the experiences we have as young students stay with us forever. Maybe a person will become a lifelong reader because of the encouragement a parent gave. Maybe they’ll give up altogether because of the bad attitude a teacher had. Think about what you are saying to yourself and the students around you – are you promoting success or doubt/fear/mediocrity?

Turn it all around today and go for the life of your dreams! Let http://www.WagnerWolf.com help with our inspirational, educational, and fun books. Read books or watch videos about people who have found the type of success you have always dreamed of. Use your words to get yourself into the right frame of mind – where you know that success and happiness are possible, fear isn’t real, and life can be as amazing as you say it is.  Think deeply about all these questions, leave a comment about what your self-speak is leading you to believe, and we’ll see you in our next post 🙂

WagnerWolf.com: On The Road To An M.D. (4)

Primary School. High School. College. We’re on the road to an M.D., so next up is MEDICAL SCHOOL…

Can I tell you something strange? I had the BEST time of my life in medical school. Better than high school. Much better than college. My friends and I say all the time that this was not supposed to happen. We were supposed to be miserable, tired, overwhelmed, and overworked, but that is far from what our experience was. I learned a lot (and had fun while doing it), served my community, and set myself up for success upon graduation. I knew all the material and impressed those at other institutions. I even studied abroad (all expenses paid) during my fourth year – an incredible experience…I attribute all of this to being at the best school for me where I was surrounded by great professors, staff, and students. There were opportunities everywhere, and because I was finally devoting time to my passion (medicine), everything fell into place.

Let that be an important reminder to you. Choose the best school for yourself. The one that is a perfect fit. The one where things just feel right.  Find study buddies who are serious about learning and will help you master the material. Select an environment that will expose you to all kinds of patient populations and give you hands on projects – it will definitely help when choosing a specialty or residency program. And through it all, keep pushing. Just because I said I had a great time in med school doesnt mean that it was 100% problem free. Luckily, I learned how to deal with setbacks & disappointments so that they didnt detract from the wonderful things happening around me.

May your story be filled with great times also. May you get everything out of school that you want. May you enjoy every second of the journey. For detailed information on my journey through elementary school, high school, college, and event residency, you gotta order my book, ‘So You Wanna Be A Doctor??’. It has my complete story as well as the stories of my friends and colleagues during school. It will help if you’re on the path, but it is also a great read full of triumphs and trials. Hop on over to http://www.wagnerwolf.com to see what great things I’m talking about 😀

WagnerWolf.com: On The 10th Day Of Veganism…

Who needs turkey or egg nog when you’ve got these goodies?? Let’s continue…

On the tenth day of veganism, my true love gave to me…

ten terrific mangoes

nine granny smith apples

eight pineapples plump

seven strawberry seeds

six gorgeous grapes

f I v e bananas with strings

four cantaloupes

three watermelons

two squishy dates

and a fuzzy peach in a pear tree

          Health benefits of Mangoes

§  Mango fruit is rich in pre-biotic dietary fiber, vitamins, minerals, and poly-phenolic flavonoid antioxidant compounds.

§  According to new research study, mango fruit has been found to protect against colon, breast, leukemia and prostate cancers. Several trial studies suggest that polyphenolic anti-oxidant compounds in mango are known to offer protection against breast and colon cancers.

§  Mango fruit is an excellent source of Vitamin-A and flavonoids like beta-carotene, alpha-carotene, andbeta-cryptoxanthin. 100 g of fresh fruit provides 765 IU or 25% of recommended daily levels of vitamin-A. Together; these compounds have been known to have antioxidant properties and are essential for vision. Vitamin A is also required for maintaining healthy mucus membranes and skin. Consumption of natural fruits rich in carotenes is known to protect the body from lung and oral cavity cancers.

§  Fresh mango is a good source of potassium. 100 g fruit provides 156 mg of potassium while just 2 mg of sodium. Potassium is an important component of cell and body fluids that helps controlling heart rate and blood pressure.

§  It is also a very good source of vitamin-B6 (pyridoxine), vitamin-C and vitamin-E. Consumption of foods rich in vitamin C helps the body develop resistance against infectious agents and scavenge harmful oxygen-free radicals. Vitamin B-6 or pyridoxine is required for GABA hormone production within the brain. It also controls homocystiene levels within the blood, which may otherwise be harmful to blood vessels resulting in CAD, and stroke.

§  Further, it composes moderate amounts of copper. Copper is a co-factor for many vital enzymes, including cytochrome c-oxidase and superoxide dismutase (other minerals function as co-factors for this enzyme are manganese and zinc). Copper is also required for the production of red blood cells.

§  Additionally, mango peel is also rich in phytonutrients, such as the pigment antioxidants like carotenoids and polyphenols.

Delish!

http://www.wagnerwolf.com

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